Bernie Anderson
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the blog

Current musings, whatever they may be. 

Sanitize Your Rotting Projects

It’s the project you've wanted to do for a long time. A passion project. A dream. There may be a deadline. There may not be a deadline. Your boss is breathing down your neck for this thing. You've had the idea for years.

Whatever the project may be, there are a limited number of things you can do with it.

Start it.

Sometimes the only way move forward is to begin. And beginning can be a difficult way to get momentum. But, it's physics. An object in motion. Exert the necessary energy. Get it moving. Start the thing.

Finish it.

The other way to move a project forward is to simply get it done. Sometimes things stall out partway through. Get it done. Knock it out. Punch it in the face.

Reassign it.

You may not be the right person to do or to finish this thing. Determine this as quickly and efficiently as possible. Give it to someone else who is able to finish the thing. Then cross it off your list. Get it off your plate. Give the responsibility away.

Delay it.

This is an intentional delay. Unintentional delay is procrastination, which is rarely helpful. Now may not be the right time to do the thing. Put and date on it and put it off. Put off to tomorrow what can’t possibly be finished today.

Delete it.

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This one's simple. Take a pen and draw a line through the thing. Check it off the list, as if it's done. Because, as far as your concerned, it is done. Some projects are just never going to happen. It's been on the list for 6 months. For a year. It's clearly unessential or it would have happened. Make it go away.

It’s possible to do one (or, in some cases, a combination) of these things. Start. Finish. Reassign. Delay. Delete.

It’s also possible to ignore. But ignoring just makes a project rot. And rotting projects will eventually begin to stink.